Beautiful Pets and Their Dilemmas

Nae's Nest —  June 17, 2013 — Leave a comment

Dog survives four days trapped under boat

Jun 17, 2013 

FAIRBANKS, Alaska (UPI) — An Alaska man whose boat overturned while he was out with two friends and a dog said the canine survived under the vessel for four days.

Jeremy McDonald, 34, said the boat overturned May 26 while he was out with his friends, brothers John and Billy Minerva, ages 35 and 25, and John Minerva’s girlfriend’s 30-pound Labrador retriever and terrier mix, Cutie, were out on the Chena River, the Fairbanks News-Miner reported Thursday.

McDonald and the Minerva brothers were able to make it to shore, but they were unable to find Cutie despite hours of searching.

McDonald said he was able to reach the damaged boat May 30 and Cutie revealed herself, alive and still wearing her canine flotation device, when a retrieval crew righted the vessel.

“I was pretty sure we were going to go there and find a dead dog,” McDonald said. It was pretty much a miracle.

John Minerva said he and his girlfriend, Grace Sommer, were overjoyed to have the dog back. He said she is recovering from her ordeal on the river.

“She was sore for a couple of days, but other than that she was fine,” Minerva said.

Copyright 2013 by United Press International


Named ‘Deucy’ Is Doing Well

A rare, two-faced kitten was born in Amity, Oregon this week. Stephanie Durkee, the owner of both the female kitten and its mother, took the two-faced cat to a vet, who say she’s in good health.

screenshot from video coverage

The animal, which meows loudly from both mouths, has just one body and set of organs. Owner Stephanie Durkee says she thought her children had made a mistake when they told her a cat with two heads had been born.

Durkee told Portland’s KGW-TV the kitten—named “Deucy”—has been rejected by her mother, so she’s been feeding her warmed kitten formula from a syringe.

“The kids … came in and said, ‘Mom there’s a kitty with two heads,’” Durkee told Portland’s NBC affiliate. “And I said, ‘I think you guys are just tired, you’re crazy, that doesn’t happen.’”

Durkee, who plans to keep Deucy, says the kitten was born at “6:11 a.m. on 6/11 under the ‘Gemini’ astrological sign.” Durkee said she “can’t help but wonder at the ‘double’ coincidences surrounding Deucy’s birth.”

Two-faced cats—known as Janus cats, for the two-faced Roman god who also gave us the word“January”—are unusual but not unprecedented.

Two-faced Janus kitten dies in Oregon

Jun 17, 2013 

AMITY, Ore. (UPI) — An unusual two-faced kitten died Thursday two days after its birth in Amity, Ore., in spite of its owner’s regular feedings with an eyedropper.

Stephanie Durkee told KGW-TV the kitten’s mother had rejected the newborn, refusing to feed it. Durkee, who named the kitten Deucy, said its health deteriorated quickly.

The kitten, who had two healthy littermates with normal faces, suffered from a disorder known as diprosopus. Cats with the disorder are also known as Janus Cats after the two-faced Roman god Janus, who also gave his name to the month of January.

Durkee’s veterinarian told The (Portland) Oregonian most kittens born with two faces die soon after birth, although he has heard of a few surviving to be adults. One lived to be 12 years old.

Copyright 2013 by United Press International


Pet Vet: Should Alfred’s wings be clipped?

Jun 12, 2013 Jeff Kahler, D.V.M., The Modesto Bee

It is common practice for people to have their bird’s wings clipped in order to prevent it from flying. Jerry wonders if that is the right thing for Alfred, his palm cockatoo.

Jerry’s major fear is that Alfred might fly out an open door into the wild blue yonder, never to be seen again.

Disabling a bird’s ability to fly can make training it a more rewarding experience, as the bird is no longer able to escape by taking flight. Birds that cannot fly are less likely to reach areas that may pose some sort of danger. Ceiling fans come to mind, along with hot cooking surfaces. But I prefer to allow my birds to fly.

Flight is an important exercise for aerobic fitness and for the development and maintenance of good muscle tone. Flight can allow a bird to avoid danger or flee from it — think four-legged pets. Obviously, this would not be a factor for all bird households. Birds can be taught to avoid things in the house while flying.

Of course, every situation is unique. Birds that are not handled and that don’t spend much, if any time, out of the cage may need to be clipped. If they were allowed to escape their enclosures, they would fly in an unfamiliar environment while experiencing some degree of panic. This is precisely why I believe it is very important to make your bird a part of your life. Play and interact with it and it will not fear flying in the house. It’s best to start doing so when birds are young, but still can be accomplished with older birds, albeit with more effort.

As for Alfred, I suspect he can be allowed to fly. From Jerry’s description, Alfred is very bonded to Jerry. I imagine he is very secure and should do quite well flying through Jerry’s house. Palm cockatoos are large birds and can knock things over with nothing more than the air movement created by their wings during flight. Jerry’s main concern that Alfred might fly out an open door and disappear would always be a potential concern of mine. I cannot advise testing that theory, but I will tell you that birds well-bonded to humans do not generally fly away, never to return.

I can attest to this from personal experience. One of my birds, Tuki, was outdoors with me on my shoulder while I was working in the yard. She was suddenly spooked by the rotating blades of my windmill and flew off into a Cypress tree, 25 feet off the ground. She was obviously scared and would not leave the tree. I climbed the tree to rescue her, and she came right to me.

I advise discussing the clipping of wings with an avian veterinarian and with other bird owners. If a decision is made to clip your bird’s feathers, make sure it is done properly. Inappropriately clipped feathers can cause problems such as bleeding from the feather shafts and poking of the body wall with the cut feather ends. This can lead to plucking behavior.

Not cutting the proper amount or proper types of feathers is another concern. This may allow the bird to fly or, worse, cause it to fall and potentially be injured.


Jeff Kahler is a veterinarian in Modesto, Calif. Questions can be submitted to Your Pet in care of LifeStyles, The Modesto Bee, P.O. Box 5256, Modesto CA 95352.

(c)2013 The Modesto Bee (Modesto, Calif.)

Visit The Modesto Bee (Modesto, Calif.) at

Distributed by MCT Information Services


Nae's Nest


I find myself "Dancing With Cancer", problem is...I can't dance. I stumble, bumble, and get pulled along. To keep my sanity, (humor me), I write short stories, a journal, musings and poetry....just about anything goes.

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